- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 24, 2005

A former executive of a Fairfax-based company facing a federal lawsuit over the collapse of Children’s Hospital Foundation’s car-donation program has reached a tentative out-of-court settlement, agreeing to cooperate with the nonprofit as it tries to account for nearly $700,000, a defense attorney said.

Daniel T. Corrigan has agreed to pay an unspecified sum to settle the lawsuit filed by the foundation, his attorney, Charles Sloan, said. Mr. Corrigan is the company’s former marketing officer.

“He’s also agreed at my recommendation that he would cooperate,” Mr. Sloan said. “I think Children’s is still trying to figure out where that money went.”

A recent legal filing by Children’s Hospital Foundation stated that a tentative agreement with Mr. Corrigan was in place.

Children’s Hospital Foundation, the fundraising arm of Children’s National Medical Center, also has sued Charity Vehicle Services; its chief executive, Gregory C. Babcock; his ad firm, the Babcock Advertising Agency Inc.; and two other Charity Vehicle Services executives, Ruth Song-Babcock and Richard Murray.



In court documents filed last week, an attorney for the Babcocks and the Babcock Advertising Agency requested a change of venue for the case. The filing stated that the defendants cannot get a fair trial in the District because of pretrial publicity and close ties that many D.C. residents have to Children’s National Medical Center, the country’s third-oldest children’s hospital.

“Indeed, being sued by Children’s Hospital in Washington, D.C., is akin to being sued by the late Mother [Teresa] in Calcutta, India,” the request states.

The foundation says it hired Charity Vehicle Services in 2002. But by January, the widely publicized program had collapsed.

According to the foundation, an internal investigation found that Charity Vehicle Services executives diverted funds, covered up an accounting shortfall and paid themselves dividends with money that should have gone to fund pediatric research.

In a response to the complaint filed Friday, an attorney for the Babcocks and the Babcock Advertising Agency blamed the financial dispute on Mr. Corrigan and Mr. Murray.

The documents also stated that Mr. Babcock had no day-to-day oversight of his company’s operations, and that he and Charity Vehicle Services first alerted Children’s Hospital Foundation about concerns over the handling of charity funds.

According to the Babcocks’ filings, Mr. Murray submitted fraudulent expense reports drawn from funds that belonged to the foundation.

Mr. Murray has denied any wrongdoing. He said that Mr. Babcock handled banking and other financial aspects of the company, while he worked on selling donated vehicles through auctions.

Mr. Babcock did not return phone calls, and his attorney, Scott S. Ives, said his client did nothing wrong.

Mr. Sloan said Mr. Corrigan “played a minor role in the company.” He said Mr. Corrigan moved to California in January 2002, about the time the foundation hired Charity Vehicle Services.

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